When Google announced the rollout of the overhauled commenting system on YouTube on November 6, it received mixed reactions. The new system that forces users to use their Google+ user account to comment on the video website has earned the ire of YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim. After being silent for eight years, Karim made his second post on YouTube, a scathing one.
While Karim's first post on YouTube in April 2005 was just about himself enjoying the zoo, the co-founder of the video-sharing site has decided to say something emphatically this time to protest against the recent changes made by Google.
"Why the fuck do I need a Google+ account to comment on a video," said Karim on his YouTube profile that also contains the first ever video of the site.
It is not clear if the account of the YouTube co-founder was compromised but it clearly added fuel to the controversial move by Google. The video that announced the change to the comments system has earned more than 65,000 comments. A petition on Change.org has also been started and now has more than 84,000 protesters are calling on Google to revert the changes.
"Google is forcing us to make Google+ accounts and invading our social life to comment on a YouTube video and trying to take away our anonymous profile. They are also trying to censor us unless we share the same worldview as they do," the petition stated.
Google announced that it will implement the changes to YouTube's commenting system using the Google+ service in September. The new system aims to improve the quality of conversation and will put high-quality comments on top while moving non-relevant ones to the bottom. The service classifies comments from video creators, celebrities, and friends of users, or other comments resulting in more high quality interactions.
"Starting this week, when you're watching a video on YouTube, you'll see comments sorted by people you care about first. If you post videos on your channel, you also have more tools to moderate welcome and unwelcome conversations. This way, YouTube comments will become conversations that matter to you," YouTube announced on its official blog, November 6.
Since the takeover by Google in 2006, YouTube has introduced a lot of changes to the website. In 2011, the video service required its users to log-in using their Gmail accounts to enjoy the full features of the website. In August this year, Google also blocked Microsoft Windows smartphone users from downloading the YouTube app forcing these users to access the site straight from an Internet browser. Design tweaks were also implemented but the latest changes to the commenting system drew the loudest buzz in YouTube's community of users.